In our increasingly globalized world, the need for marketing has skyrocketed. Given that a capitalist economy runs on the number of goods and services bought and sold, marketing is how the producers connect with their consumers. Advertisements are the life and blood of this sector.

From buying home groceries to booking your dream holiday, from choosing colleges to picking a good movie to watch, advertisements seem to guide every minute decision taken by the consumer.

While every individual has come across at least one advertisement in their life, not many may know of the sheer scope and variety in this mammoth industry.

From pop-up ads that one sees on their average spin on their Internet to social media ads, the diversity in this medium of marketing is endless. Here, we talk of one such underrated kind of advertising: Advertorials.

What is an Advertorial?

Advertorials are a clever play on words, combining the terms “advertising” and “editorial.” From this, it is easy to understand what they are. In simple words, advertorials are advertisements that appear in the form of an article.

They are long-form sponsored advertisements disguised as educational pieces. From web pages to journals, their presence is very much ubiquitous. Designed specifically to look and read like an average journal article, its content conveys important information to sell something to the reader.

advertorial_example

The beauty of an advertorial lies in the fact that it is constructed to look like it belongs in the editorial that it features in.

Taking a modern spin on the traditional in-your-face paid advertisements, advertorial design draws on the best of both worlds: circumventing the need for strict editing while providing essential information without the time-consuming procedure of presenting graphics and catchy slogans.

It hits that sweet spot of not putting off the reader while maintaining their curiosity to know more about the content itself.

The best way to understand the function of advertorials in the marketing industry is a simple comparison to its counterpart: the infomercial.

Infomercials blew up in the early 1970s when advertisers realized that the consumers liked to know about the product in advertising itself. Simply put, infomercials are to TV as advertorials are to the digital or print media.

Adding to the slew of advantages is the mere fact that the consumer knows that the producer would sell them something before they finish reading it. Most advertising tactics rely on their subtlety, their ability to create familiarity without breeding contempt. That is, however, not the case with advertorials.

advertorial_example

One of the greatest things about employing advertorial design is that they provide a lot more information, quantity, and quality.

The necessity of being subtle does not hold them back, presenting the consumer with a remarkable amount of knowledge that is otherwise lost in the advertising process.

What this essentially means is that digital marketers, entrepreneurs, and B2B companies alike can use it to warm up cold traffic that a direct advertisement creates. It automatically increases the conversion rate of the consumers that purchase the product.

Widely popular during the 1980s, this form of advertising is making a huge comeback. As a result, everyone is scrambling to understand how to use this lucrative tool; one of the best ways to do that is by understanding how advertorials work.

What’s Right for you: Advertorials vs. Native Ads

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Advertising is a skill in and of itself and knowing what to employ at when the time will help you tap into it effectively. For example, to make the most out of your pre-sales page, it would be useful to be able to recognize and select the appropriate form of advertisement for which you’re paid to advertise.

Advertorials are most often confused with native advertisements, another form of marketing prevalent in today’s advertising projects. Because they are so similar, distinguishing when to use one and when to use the other will be extremely crucial.

Essentially, Native Advertising is a form of marketing that has been carefully curated to make the reader feel like they are gleaning important knowledge. The main purpose of Native Advertising is focused on actually helping the reader rather than selling them a product.

On the other hand, advertisers prove to be extremely useful in situations wherein the audience is expecting to be sold on a product. The direct, fact-of-matter nature of an advertorial makes the reader feel like they have been well informed about the product before they are asked to buy it.

The main difference between the two lies in the way that the user experiences the paid content. When it comes to brand recognition and general advertising, leveraging native advertising and engaging with advertorials when consumers are prepared to accept a sales pitch from the article would be beneficial.

How does an Advertorial work?

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Advertorials are designed to appear like articles publicizing a product or service. Digital marketers can use links to a special landing page on their URL or on the website of a firm with whom they’ve purchased advertising.

The ability to create an outstanding advertisement campaign depends on how well one meets a consumer’s expectations right after they have engaged with their advertisement. It is all about creating that perfect post-click experience.

One of the greatest advantages of advertorials is that these are narrative-based pages lie between your initial PPC ad and your sales page in your funnel.

As a result, readers are poised to buy from you well before they ever arrive on your sales page, thanks to expertly produced stories that bring them further along the buyer’s awareness cycle.

Creating an advertorial design that does its job well is very much like making small talk at a social gathering: it breaks the ice gently, lets you put a foot in the door, and makes the selling process that much more effective.

In addition, they warm up cold traffic so that readers who click on your ad are eager to buy even before they get to your landing page or online store.

How-landing-pages-work

Many businesses have an existing working funnel when it comes to advertorials. It most often looks something like this: it starts with a social ad, leading them to a landing page that will eventually take them to the main sales page. However, if you want to increase the number of conversions from your social media advertisements leading to your final sales page, it would be an excellent idea to invest in an advertorial.

Most online buyers are extremely aware of advertising tactics used by digital marketers. Directly jumping the gun and showing them your sales page after the initial social media ad does not do the trick anymore. This means that it becomes crucial to gain the reader’s trust before you present them with the idea of buying your product.

Specifically designed to provide value to the reader, advertorials achieve the extraordinary task of getting the reader in the right frame of mind before they land on your sales page. The consumers are in content consumption mode, absolutely ripe to receive information.

The way to achieve that would be by plugging one’s advertorials right in the middle of the advertising funnel. Placing the advertorial right between that initial Facebook ad and your sales page will make a phenomenal difference in how your product receives traction from your audience.

What problems can Advertorials solve?

One of the primary advertorial goals involves solving the problems presented by other means of advertising. Here are a few ways in which advertorials prove to be extremely advantageous:

benefits-of-using-advertorials

1) They dodge ad blockers

Sick and tired of the intrusive nature of pop-up adverts, nearly a quarter of the users on the Internet have employed some ad-blocking mechanism. Unfortunately, this essentially means that a significant part of paid articles does not reach their intended audience.

Advertorials help because they are embedded in the site itself, meaning that they cannot be categorized as advertisements. This means that they are effective loopholes around ad blockers.

2) A way to get people to engage with display adverts

Since advertorials seem less meddlesome than their pop-up counterparts, it is more likely that the reader will engage with the content it presents. In rare cases, they may even prove useful in bringing in organic shares, a mechanism that normal ads would not be able to capitalize on.

3) Better potential to sell probable buyers on your product

Offering a softer means of dealing with the reader means that their connection is that much stronger. In addition, the storytelling ability of an advertorial can help the reader develop trust in your content, eventually leading to the realistic possibility of making a sale.

How To Create an Advertorial Design?

Whether you are a technology consulting company or business services, it is extremely important to be well versed in advertorial design best practices.

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1) Learn how your audience talks about your proposed topic and product

Researching and surveying your target population will prove to be extremely advantageous for you as a digital marketer.

Understanding exactly how your audience is talking about and perceiving the proposed product/topic will help you custom your advertorial design to fit their needs.

2) Define your angle

The main point of an advertorial design lies in the format it is present in. Therefore, defining the angle you will approach the potential buyer with will go a long way in increasing the effectiveness of your landing page.

3) Strike a balance between informational and promotional content

Overly promotional content often puts off readers, and too much information might divert attention from promoting the product itself.

This is where using advertorials makes a huge difference. Engaging in a storytelling process makes it easier for the reader to consume your content, paving the way for potential conversion into a sale. It is all about hitting that goldilocks note.

4) Write like the publisher

Writing an advertorial designed to fit in the mold of the editorial that it is published in is of utmost importance. This is usually done to make sure that the advertorial looks natural and not out of place to the readers.

In addition, when the article’s tone matches that of the journal itself, readers are more likely to pay attention to the content of the advertorial, helping it achieve its goal.

5) Attention-grabbing headlines

One of the basic rules of advertisements is the attention-grabbing ability of a tool. Ranging from catchy slogans to bold editorial titles, generations of advertisements used this tactic and have received noteworthy success.

Advertorials are essentially advertisements; therefore, using eye-catching headlines would be ideal.

6) A subtle call to action

Ultimately, the point of an advertorial is to ease the customer up to buy the product that it endorses.

Therefore, it would be prudent to add a call to action, i.e., asking the consumer to take tangible steps in buying the product. Business services could achieve this by placing a URL that will take potential buyers to the main site itself.

Final Thoughts

Advertorials that are well-executed add value to the target audience while simultaneously selling a product or service. They’re a content marketing ploy that takes advantage of the site’s reputation where they’re published.

Using them in landing pages is a clever tactic that every digital marketer hoping to get the most out of their advertising process must note.

Are You Looking for an Agency That Can Help You Create Advertorials?

If you’re seeking help in creating an advertorial design, look no further. We use our knowledge at Apexure to develop advertorials that raise your prospects’ awareness of your product, company, and the solution you’re delivering to their problem.

advertorials

About The Author

Waseem Bashir

Founder & CEO of Apexure, Waseem worked in London’s Financial Industry. He has worked on trading floors in BNP Paribas and Trafigura, developing complex business systems. Waseem loves working with Startups and combines data and design to create improved User Experiences.

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